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Biography

Joe Phelan is a singer-songwriter based in Waterford, Ireland.  As a member of the well known sea-shanty singing group ‘Hooks and Crookes’ he is becoming widely known throughout the maritime music world in Europe for his own brand of button accordion backed sea songs.  Joe had dabbled in writing and singing and playing music since he was a schoolboy, but has only recently started writing again in any serious fashion.  In fact the writing bug really only took hold when, with the preparations for the Tall Ships in Waterford in 2005, he discovered the wonderful singing and music scene in a circle of local pubs around Waterford centered around Mary Kennedy’s pub in Callaghane.  The  ‘open-door’, ‘everyone welcome’  format of the music sessions along with the uncritical (and sometimes very critical) support of his fellow members of Hooks and Crookes gave him the platform for developing and singing new songs.

The net result is an expanding range of new music and new songs about history, wars, travel, love, the sea, drink, astronomy, hurling, politics and the general affairs of men  – in fact anything that raises his curiosity and enthusiasm.  It is hoped that all these songs will have a universal appeal – those based on specific local issues, have themes that are not uncommon throughout the world (consider even ‘The Bilberry Goats’,  ‘Portlairge’ and ‘The Town of the Sticks': with themes of harbour goat herd survival, invasion-displacement and assimilation, and all consuming sport madness respectively).

These songs are for singing and enjoyment and we hope you like them.  Have a listen to the first 30 songs.   The music and songs for Album 4 are currently emerging one by one from Joe’s music hideout – it is hoped to release this new collection of songs within a year or two.  Creativity cannot be rushed – it takes whatever time it takes.

In the meantime enjoy the music and keep singing.